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Completing the 2020 Beyond Sport Global Awards Journey

December 18, 2020 

2020 marked the 12th edition of the Beyond Sport Global Awards. Since we were unable celebrate in-person, we went virtual, mounting a three-month multimedia campaign - a first for the annual awards.

We urged viewers to learn, share and amplify sport with intention on a much deeper level. Joining The Journey, we immersed ourselves in the incredible sport for social change work – through video, picture and words – and celebrated the human spirit and determination to create a better world for all.

"Our communities have always sought to face up to challenges and seek solutions, but no one could ever have imagined the additional complexities that this year would bring. Against this context, it is even more impressive that these programs continue to deliver impact across the world, changing lives and holding communities together," said Nick Keller, Beyond Sport President and Founder.

"Beyond Sport is humbled and grateful for the opportunity to elevate these leaders that seek to use sport to improve people's lives for the better." 


The journey began with shortlisters representing Brazil, Cambodia, Kenya and the Ukraine who are using sport to make political, economic and social policies universal and to ensure a life of dignity and equality for all. Vijana Amani Pamoja (VAP), Population Council, Mom in Balance and Women Win received the award for its “Secure Futures” program.

Dikembe Mutombo, NBA Cares Global Ambassador and humanitarian announced the winner:


Enouce Ndeche, Founder and Executive Director of VAP reacts to winning the Award - shared by Andrew Robinson representing Urban Dove, a 2019 Collective Impact Award winner in this category:



Next, we celebrated shortlisters representing Tanzania and Zanzibar; Los Angeles, California; Lebanon and worldwide representatives who are using sport to build healthier communities, physically and mentally. The International Surf Therapy Organization (ISTO) received the 2020 Sport for Health & Well-Being Award for its “A New(er) Method of Intervention” program.

Award-winning professional athlete, sport for social change advocate and avid surfer, Aritz Aranburu announced the winner:

“It is a great honor to be part of celebrating sport being used to powerfully benefit society. Having achieved some of the highest levels in my sport, I’ve been grateful to use my platform to advocate for mental and physical wellness.” 


Kris Primacio, Co-Founder and CEO of ISTO reacts to winning the Award, along with Kathy McAllister, Executive Director of Goals Haiti, a past winner in this category:

“One of the beautiful things about being a shortlister is being introduced to all of these incredible organizations and you’re just so proud to be a part of it.”



Following this, we amplified stories of our shortlisters representing Mexico, Australia, the Philippines and countries across Africa who are leveraging sport to ensure inclusive economic growth and productive work for all. Charity Bounce received the 2020 Sport for Decent Work & Economic Growth Award for their program, “Stand Tall.”

3-time AFL Premiership player and member of the Indigenous Team of the Century, Chris Johnson, announced the winner:


Ian Heininger, Co-Founder and CEO of Charity Bounce reacts to winning the Award after the 2018 winner of this category, Lucky Karki Chhetri, Founder of 3 Sisters Adventure Trekking, shared the exciting news. 



Rounding off, we celebrated shortlisters representing Tanzania, Afghanistan and Iraq, Zambia and Mozambique, and Nepal who are leveraging sport to promote peaceful and inclusive societies and justice for all. Free to Run received the Sport for Peace & Social Justice Award for their “Promoting Peace & Social Justice Across Divides" program.

Past Global Award winners and activists, Dr. Hajar Abdulfazl and Maryam Shojaei announced the winner: 

“I have seen first-hand how sport can play a wonderful role in bringing people together and breaking down barriers,” says Shojaei. 


Taylor Smith, Executive Director of Free to Run reacts to winning the Award shared by Jesús Villalobos and Nahomy Monroy representing past winners Utopia A.C. 


We also celebrated the winners and stories of the Collective Impact Awards. Supported by grant funding and a comprehensive business support package, four organizations in each category were selected to work together over one year, benefiting from each other’s individual expertise, sharing best practice and working through issues in real time to drive real, sustainable impact through sport. This year’s combined efforts will combat Gender Equality and Reduced Racial Inequality. 


Congratulations to the Winners of the 2020 Sport for Gender Equality Collective Impact Award Supported by Comic Relief and the BT Supporters Club: Pamoja Initiative (Kenya), Sport-Aid Development Trust (Zambia), Soccer Without Borders (Uganda) and Moving the Goalposts (Kenya). 


These four organizations have been chosen to work together over the course of a year to advance UN Global Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls across East and Southern Africa. They were each interviewed by Motshidisi Mohono, Sports Anchor and Presenter. 


Congratulations to the Winners of the 2020 Sport for Reduced Racial Inequalities Collective Impact Award Supported by the DICK’s Sporting Goods Foundation: America SCORES New York, The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, Memphis Inner City Rugby and PeacePlayers United States. 


These four organizations have been chosen to work together over the course of a year to uncover the best ways to harness sport in pursuit of racial equality and to support Black communities in and across the United States. Each organization was interviewed by ESPN SportsCenter Anchor, Michael Eaves. 


Finishing off our campaign, we celebrated the winners and heard the inspiring stories of the Courageous Use of Sport Award Winners, supported by WWE: Shaymaa, Iraq; Dickens Omondi Odhiambo, Kenya; Marian Crisley A. Yman, Philippines; Sediqa Rezaei, Australia and Matheus Oliveira, Brazil. 

Showing bravery and determination in the face of adversity, these five young leaders are using sport to lead their communities to brighter futures, taking a stand against inequality and injustice - all while still in their youth. WWE superstars, Sami Zayn and Apollo Crews announced the Courageous Use of Sport Award Winners [in the video below], and WWE superstars Sasha BanksDrew McIntyre and Nia Jax interviewed some of the incredible winners. 


A huge success, we were able to bring the Beyond Sport family together in a year when motivation and hope are sorely needed. We embraced sport with intention on a deeper level, with the Beyond Sport #SameTeam remaining a much-needed inspiration.


Sport for Reduced Inequalities Award

  • "Secure Futures", Vijana Amani Pamoja, Population Council, Mom in Balance and Women Win

Sport for Health and Well-being Award

  • “A New(er) Method of Intervention”, The International Surf Therapy Organization

Sport for Decent Work & Economic Growth Award

  • “Stand Tall”, Charity Bounce

Sport for Peace and Social Justice Award

  • “Promoting Peace & Social Justice Across Divides", Free to Run

Sport for Gender Equality Collective Impact Award Supported by Comic Relief and the BT Supporters Club

  • Pamoja Initiative (Kenya)
  • Sport-Aid Development Trust (Zambia)
  • Soccer Without Borders (Uganda)
  • Moving the Goalposts (Kenya)

Sport for Reduced Racial Inequalities Collective Impact Award Supported by The DICK’s Sporting Goods Foundation

  • America SCORES New York
  • The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation
  • Memphis Inner City Rugby
  • PeacePlayers United States

Courageous Use of Sport Award, presented by WWE

  • Shaymaa, Iraq
  • Dickens Omondi Odhiambo, Kenya
  • Marian Crisley A. Yman, Philippines
  • Sediqa Rezaei, Australia
  • Matheus Oliveira, Brazil

Beyond Sport thanks the following Award Partners for providing funding and resources:

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Exciting News from Beyond Sport!